David introduced me to Jarold… “This is Matthew, the guy who got me started studying theology. Four years ago he pointed me to all kinds of great resources to help understand the Bible!”
At 6 a.m. on a Friday morning, showing up at church to study theology is not the first thing on the minds of many men, but David and Jarold are faithful and eager to learn the truth of God’s word, even if that means getting up extra early to do so.
David was also being very gracious in his introduction of me—I know David has had other good teachers who have spent much more time with him than I have been able to do. “When you and I met,” I said, “all I did was pass on to you what I learned from Pastor Bob when he read Systematic Theology with me back in 1999.”
“I know,” smiled David, “that’s exactly what you told me at the time. And now I’m passing it on to Jarold.”
I couldn’t have been happier to see 2 Timothy 2:2 in action, “The things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.”
Jarold and David, faithful men
entrusted to teach others
“And there’s more,” Jarold added, “I have a step-son, and the things I’m learning from our study of theology I take home and share with him.”
What a privilege to catch a glimpse of God at work across generations of “faithful men” as each, like runners in a relay race, passes forward the baton of the gospel!
Furlough & Support Update
When we arrived in the States on furlough last November, we came with the plan of renewing our relationships with partners at home and returning fully-funded to Brazil in July. That has been a good experience, and we have chosen to extend our stay in the States a bit longer to finish the task well.
In addition to time with our home church, Visalia Evangelical Free Church, we have had the opportunity to visit and share our ministry with many wonderful people at other churches in the area, some of whom the Lord has led to join our team of ministry partners.
It is still our goal to return to Brazil in time for me to teach New Testament Introduction at the Escola Bíblica de Expositores in Fortaleza this fall semester. The wonders of theological education in the age of Internet mean I can send the reading assignments on ahead and teach the lecture portion as a week-long module when we arrive in Brazil.
Please continue to pray for God’s provision and our timely return to Brazil.
The joy of hearing the gospel
Luis lives next door and gives us a hand with yard work from time to time. A couple weeks ago, I explained the gospel to Luis and his girlfriend and her sister. They all were amazed and said they had never heard anything like it and that they wanted to turn from sin and follow Jesus.
Please pray for Luis and the two young ladies who so eagerly heard the gospel, that they would be like the good soil in the parable in Mark 4, where the Word was planted and grew to maturity and bore fruit many times more than what was planted!
We are eager to return to Brazil. But it is good to be in the US for a season, and “whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him.” Grateful for opportunities to minister, we immediately thank God for each of you who pray for us and give so generously. You are not mere spectators of this “relay race” but partners in the gospel from the first day until now (Phil 1:5).
Action International Ministries